Wigan 22 - Southport 10
Frustrating day at the office sees Southport lose for the first time this season.
Southport’s early season run of victories can to an end on Sunday, despite some excellent set piece play and long periods of dominance against a very spirited Wigan team. With the game providing an opportunity for several players who usually fulfil a role of ‘finishers’ to start and for both Jordan and Sam P to take to the pitch for a prolonged period there was a real buzz before kick-off and Shane and I were convinced that if the team stuck to the plan points would follow.
Unfortunately a series of handling errors meant that a number of early opportunities to score were missed and the resultant frustration seemed to lead to a desire to ‘do something’ rather than keep it simple, tight and up-the-jumper. Runners ran looking for a space to make big yards rather than staying tight and allowing the pack to keep close and do damage collectively. This resulted in a number of turnovers which resulted in Wigan scoring two break away tries in the first answered twice by Southport (James C and Louis JF) – both tries resulting from practised moves.
After the first period Wigan were unable to maintain a specialist front row and this resulted in Southport losing their clearest area of dominance as the scrums became unopposed. All of the pack, ably led by Louis JF, performed well in the set piece – Josh only failing to secure the ball from one put in – and their collective “1-2-3-SQUEEZE!” saw them easily advancing over the ball. Line outs also worked well with the lifters ensuring that both of the jumpers remained dominant.
But it wasn’t to be enough and this time James C and Nathan’s energy just wasn’t enough to turn things around. Frustration mounted as it became apparent that Southport were still at home to the knock-on and two break away tries in the closing minutes saw Southport loose for the first time this season.